Monday, 7 May 2012

7th May 1812: Report on Luddite raids for arms in the Huddersfield area

On the 9th May 1812, the Leeds  Mercury carried a report dated Thursday 7th May from their Huddersfield correspondent about arms raids that had taken place in the vicinity over the last week, and the response of  the authorities - the official confiscation of arms:
I am sorry to inform you that the Luddites have been very active in collecting arms this last week, and have been too successful.—They proceeded to people's houses, in the townships of Almondbury, Wooldale, Farnley, Netherthong, Meltham, Honley, and Marsden and many other places in this neighbourhood; they entered the houses by about 20 or 30 in a gang, and demanded all the arms in the house, on pain of instant death. By this means they have obtained possession of upwards of 100 stand of arms since my last letter to you, and not one night has passed without some arms having been so taken. In order to check this alarming evil, Major Gordon has obtained possession of 200 stand of arms from the inhabitants in this neighbourhood; the military are in this matter daily employed in collecting arms, but they have not yet been fortunate enough to discover the depot of the Luddites.

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